A Laird ( /ˈlɛərd/ LAYRD) is a member of the gentry, who bears the designation Laird of X, where X is the place name, in Scotland. In the non-peerage table of precedence, a Laird ranks below a Baron and above an Esquire. The Lord Lyon, who exercises Her Majesty's prerogative in respect of determining succession to titles and dignities in Scotland, has recently produced the following guidance:

The term ‘laird’ has generally been applied to the owner of an estate, sometimes by the owner himself or, more commonly, by those living and working on the estate. It is a description rather than a title, and is not appropriate for the owner of a normal residential property, far less the owner of a small souvenir plot of land. It goes without saying that the term ‘laird’ is not synonymous with that of ‘lord’ or ‘lady’.

Read more about Laird:  Etymology, History and Definition, Forms of Address

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Famous quotes containing the word laird:

    Out then spak her father dear,
    And he spak meek and mild,
    And ever alas, sweet Janet, he says,
    I think thou gaes wi’ child.

    If that I gae wi’ child, father,
    Mysel maun bear the blame;
    There’s ne’er a laird about your ha’,
    Shall get the bairn’s name.
    Unknown. Tam Lin (l. 53–60)

    An amoeba is a formless thing which takes many shapes. It moves by thrusting out an arm, and flowing into the arm. It multiplies by pulling itself in two, without permanently diminishing the original. So with words. A meaning may develop on the periphery of the body of meanings associated with a word, and shortly this tentacle-meaning has grown to such proportions that it dwarfs all other meanings.
    —Charlton Laird (b. 1901)